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Welcome to Parenting Sweet! Parenting Sweet is a resource for parents and caregivers, featuring all the great opportunities in our region that make parenting sweet!

Appalachian Promise Alliance is Making Parenting Sweet!

We have tips, information, practices, and parenting classes, sessions, workshops, support groups, seasoned educators, and friendships that can help lighten some of your load and make parenting easier. Wish you had an extra hand? A little help? A hack that makes things a little easier? Wondering if doing something different would help? Check out the Parenting Educator Network opportunities below in the highlights.

   Monthly Fun Poll: Do you celebrate Black History Month?

Parenting Sweet helps us keep our five promises of caring adults, safe places, a healthy start, effective education, and opportunities to serve.

Looking for information or support?

Appalachian Promise Parenting Education Network Programs Find a program that fits your needs! Click to search for free or low cost, morning or evening, online or in-person, first-time or veteran parent/caregiver, and more

Visit to learn more about: The Parenting Education Network, Bristol Family Resource Center, YWCA MOMS R US, Mom Power, Hope House, Frontier Health, Highlands Community Services, Breastfeeding Essentials, Ahh Babies – Appalachian Highlands Healthy Babies – La Leche League Breastfeeding Support, Cherished Mom, Attached at the Heart Classes, Twin City Reads, Buckle Up for Life, Doula by Donation, Sullivan County Family Services, Parenting Sweet, Tricities Parenting, Tricities Babywearing, High Country Doulas, ETSU Family Physicians, Bethany Services, TriCities Babywearing TN, Sullivan County Health Department, Strong Starts, TN Voices, and more.

Looking to dive into the Black History Month theme with your children this year? Here are some places to start!

Spend some time each day this month learning about African American History, featuring activities from WeAreTeachers and more.

  1. Make a traffic light craft inspired by Garrett Morgan.
  2. Write your own dreams with this activity inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 
  3. Read a Black History Month poem.
  4. Play baseball in honor of Jackie Robinson
  5. Make your own hair products like Madam C.J. Walker
  6. Create jazz art influenced by Louis Armstrong.
  7. Research Black war veterans Benjamin O. Davis, Sr. and Benjamin O. Davis, Jr
  8. Design a freedom quilt.
  9. Make Mae Jemison’s space shuttle.
  10. Virtually visit the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, New York.
  11. Draw the Alabama Bus Boycott Rosa Parks is known for
  1. Take a virtual field trip to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture.
  2. Learn about Thurgood Marshall and his decision that separate is not equal during the Brown vs. Board of Education trial of 1954.
  3. Read poems written by Maya Angelou.
  4. Listen to a Black History Month song playlist.
  5. Make a peanut craft inspired by George Washington Carver.
  6. Try doing Alma Woodsey Thomas’s Expressionist art style.
  7. Practice your dance moves like Bill “Bojangle” Robinson.
  8. Learn about clocks with a Benjamin Banneker inspired craft.
  9. Create a handprint wreath

‘Race to Freedom’ will be performed February 2nd through February 11th on Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m.

Join ‘For His Glory Productions’ as they present an original production in honor of Black History Month. The performance ‘Race to Freedom’ tells the stories of the Underground Railroad and those who traveled it while adding recognizable landmarks from around the region for a personal touch.

Tickets are $12 for ages 12 and up and $8 for kids 6 to 11.

Every Wednesday evening, the new virtual peer space “Your Black Matters” hosts a Zoom meeting to build community and talk about the black experience in a safe space. ALL Black people are welcome.


Location: The Langston Centre, 315 Elm Street

Call: 423-434-5785

Date: Every Tuesday and Thursday

Time: 10am-1pm

Ages: 18+

Cost: Free

Registration: Call 423-434-5785 to schedule an appointment

Join The Langston Experience to learn about the history and community impact of the former Langston High School, and how this building continues to be a hub for multi-cultural interaction focused on promoting community engagement through arts, education and leadership activities.


Location: The Langston Centre, 315 Elm Street

Date: Thursdays, February 8th-April 4th, Tuesdays, February 13th-April 16th

Time: Thursday class 1-2pm, Tuesday class 6:30-8pm

Ages: 15+

Cost: $10


Program: Afternoon Black History Class (

Program: Evening Black History Class (

Weekly discussion to talk about the history of peoples of African descent.

Create, personalize, and exchange Valentine cards with your kids in time to celebrate February 14! Canva has fun templates to adapt, print, and show your love!

This performance team combines gymnastics and elements of dance to form jump roping routines. No experience needed! Performances include local events as well as traveling to competitions.

Contact Coach Sonya (423-676-0630), Amy Simmons (540-392-9138), or email to get involved!

Elizabethton Boys and Girls Club

Are you a grandparent or relative raising children? Please join us in a safe confidential space to share experience, feelings, and needed resources. Light snacks and beverages are provided and fun activities for all ages.

The next meeting is February 21, 2024 at 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm.

Sunday, February 25, 2024 from 2PM-4PM

124 Ridgemont Rd, Johnson City, TN 37601-3940, United States

Are you ready to join the fun and party with a princess?

Meet, greet, and photo op with your favorite princess!

Make sure to RSVP for the best princess event of the 2024.

Purchase a child ticket today, (one adult admission is free with each child ticket purchased)

(ONLY 25 VIP spots available)

Would you like guidance on how to help your teen cope with big emotions and reduce conflict? This free parenting program led by Dr. Rachel Miller-Slough at ETSU was built for those in your position.

This free program is ideal for caregivers of children 10 to 17 years of age, and is held virtually via Zoom.

Contact Dr. Rachel Miller-Slough at or 423-439-8307 to register or for more information.

Calling all little listeners! Join us for this reading program where participants will be able to listen to longer stories, songs and rhymes with craft time afterward. Register here:

Every Wednesday from February 7th through April 24th, 2024.

In-person at the YWCA of Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia.

These evidence-based family-centered and trauma-informed classes are designed to meet the family’s needs based on their parenting strengths and weaknesses.

Registration is required.

For more information, call Melinda Murray at 423-989-4538.

The YW Family Network and UT Extension office have partnered to bring you a four-part cooking series that focuses on creating healthy, budget conscious meals from items available through your benefits.

For more information or to register, call 423-530-2498.

High Country Doulas is offering classes on Infant Feeding, Early Postpartum and Newborn Care, and Childbirth preparation classes in Kingsport and Johnson City!

Classes begin at $55 per couple, and can be offered privately for an additional fee.

Email for more information.

Join the Birthplace of Country Music February 10-11 for a two day workshop where participants will have the opportunity to not only learn, but also build their very own cardboard dulcimer using simple tools!! We’re partnering with dulcimer player and instructor Roxanne McDaniel for this workshop, in which you will build a cardboard dulcimer using simple tools. No previous musical or technical experience is necessary. This class is open to all ages!

Click here to register:

Tuesday, February 27th-28th at 9:00am – 4:30pm EST

Ever need someone in your corner when you’re dealing with your child’s IEPs and 504 Behavior Plans?

TN Voices advocates are here to help! They will walk you through the process and offer support and training.

This project is funded by the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (TDMHSAS).

February 9th, 2024

Bristol, VA –

Gate City, VA – Guest/ Caregiver OR Volunteer

Johnson City, TN –

Connect with other parents and explore valuable information for raising children today.

Sessions begin Thursday, February 1, 2024 at 7:30 PM and online or in-person on Friday, February 2, 2024, at 10:30 AM and will continue weekly through April.

The program is available online and in-person, and you can sign up HERE.

Saturday, February 10th, 2024 at 4:30PM-7:30PM at The Wellness Center (200 MedTech Parkway, Suite 200, Johnson City, TN)

Need a fun activity for your kids while you enjoy a night out? Bring your kids ages 6 months to 12 years for pizza, popcorn and a movie.

Parents are not required on site. Payment is due at registration. Members: $25 // Non-members: $35

Must register by Feb. 7th. Call 423.431.6668 for more information.

Sullivan County Cares Grandparents Education Program 2024 Grandfamilies Program meets monthly in Bluff City. Email Paige M. at with any questions or how to attend. 

Ahh, spring! Join Johnson City Parks & Rec to learn some interesting stories about our local plants, animals and parks in our natural world as spring does its fast and furious approach! Program will be led by Connie Deegan, Park Naturalist. To register, call 423-434-6237 or in person at Memorial Park Community Center.

314 Tusculum Blvd., Greeneville, TN

The Hope Center is offering parenting classes for parents of babies and parents-to-be in March, May, August and November of 2024!

A crib and mattress / carseat will be given to those who complete all 5 class sessions.

Contact the Hope Center at 423-638-5433 or visit their website for more information.

Are your kids interested in exploring their creative side? Carly Anna Humble invites them to join her Art Journal Journey! This course will be 6 weeks long. Class will be held once a week on Tuesdays @ 2:00 PST.

With new themes and activities every week, your children will have a blast while also developing their artistic skills!

Ages 5-10 are Welcome!

These will be live classes will be held via Zoom video call and be very interactive!

  • Zoom link and code will be emailed to you ahead of time!
  • Register HERE

The Parenting Sweet is continuing registration for the February the Attached at the Heart Parenting Program!

Take advantage of the free registration for a limited time, and register yourself, your partner, and any other caregivers:

Life is busy. Parenting keeps you even busier. As a parent, it can feel like your whole schedule revolves around your kids– it’s time to do something for yourself that will benefit the whole family.

Participants will learn about child development and expectations, proven strategies for tantrums and chores, and find support and friendships. Feel confident in your parenting skills and yourself!

Sunday, February 18th, 2024 at 1:00PM

The Wellness Center (200 Med Tech Pkwy, Johnson City, TN 37604-2278, United States)

The Polar Plunge is one of the prime fundraising events for Special Olympics, with a total of 12 plunges taking place across Tennessee. To participate, team or individual plungers must register and raise a minimum of $75 ($50 for students). Those who elect not to take the chilly plunge can register as “Too Chicken”–an option that still supports Special Olympics without having to take a plunge.

Register or support others. Onsite registration opens at 1 p.m. and the costume contest is at 2 p.m., followed by the plunge.

February 9th, 2024 from 9AM to 11AM

YWCA (106 State St, Bristol, TN)

Lions Club 24-C Sight and Hearing Unit, YWCA, and the Bristol area Lions Clubs will be providing free vision screenings for infants 6 months through adulthood. Free hearing screenings will be provided for individuals 3 years old through adulthood. Screenings will also be provided for colorblindness for individuals 5 years old through adulthood.

No appointment required.

Contact Jennifer at 276-685-9480 for more information.

PARENTS – Stop the Struggling and Find Support

Join the community of parents and caregivers in our region! We hold weekly Parenting Prime Time meetups on Sunday afternoons at 3:30pm both online (RSVP for online) and in-person (RSVP for in-person) at the Parenting Sweet at 100 Ash Street, Bristol, TN (leftmost outside door). 

This is a judgment-free zone to share stories, ask questions, and gain confidence on your parenting journey. It is also a great place to volunteer and encourage and support other parents. Each week has a topic, but the primary focus is whatever you want it to be. Come relax, vent, and build connections with caregivers experiencing similar situations. Very young children are welcome to join. 

Be sure to RSVP at least eight hours before the meetup time.

Join Bristol Ballet for a new interpretation of Shakespeare’s iconic comedy, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, live on stage on May 11! The ballet tells the timeless tale of fairy mischief and mortal mayhem. Oberon, king of the fairies, fights with Titania, the queen of the fairies, over a child. Oberon punishes Titania by sending Puck, his mischievous fairy sidekick, to make Titania fall in love with the first person she sees. Puck accidentally meddles with two human couples in the course of his mischief. Thus ensues much confusion between the four mortals as their lives intertwine. Finally, Oberon makes peace with Titania, and Puck rearranges everything back to the natural order. From fairy shenanigans to love triangles to a spellbound donkey, and a lot of drama in between, there are plenty of humorous moments to enjoy

Sat, May 11, 2024
Two shows: Noon and 5:30pm
$11.00 – $23.50 plus applicable taxes and fees

Be a Parenting Volunteer

The Appalachian Promise Alliance’s Parenting Network meets the third Thursday of each month at noon and works to support parenting education in our community by sharing efforts, communicating the value and importance of parenting education, and learning more about how we can better serve families. If you are interested in helping teach classes, mentor parents, or have parenting educator updates to share, please contact us at!

February auditions for this fun show coming to Theatre Bristol!

Free Audition workshop on February 10, 2:00 – 4:00 pm – register online at

Details at

Are You a Grandparent? 


Grandparent Workshop Series Bristol’s Promise will be offering a workshop series just for grandparents of children ages birth to five! Why? We love our grandparents! Whether you are “sharing the care” or a custodial grandparent, we recognize the vital importance of grandparents. If you or someone you know may be interested in learning more about this program, please submit your information here. Questions? Email Lily Royston ( Click to learn more!  

Aspiring actor in your life? Or have a little one who could use some confidence building? Or have a little one who has a lot of imagination? Or have one who would just love a great time with some new friends? Theatre Bristol is registering now – classes begin February 5 for Creative Dramatics and February 6 for Dramatics 1 and 2.

The Strengthening Families Program is a family-focused parenting class for parents, grandparents and caregivers. The class includes highly interactive topics geared toward managing stress, improving communication skills, goal setting, solving problems as a family and discipline. The program utilizes role-plays, discussions and family projects along with providing developmentally appropriate examples for common problems from preschoolers to teens.

For littles and those who love them! Tickets on sale online at, $5 per family. Free bagels and coffee from Bristol Bagel and Bakery, and great resources from the Parenting Sweet!

The Parenting Sweet has a variety of wraps, slings, buckle carriers, and more for parents’ convenience! Come in to try out different styles and learn the best fit for you and your baby.

Contact us at to learn more!

For 12-24 months: Saturdays 9-9:30am
For 2 year olds: Saturdays 9:30-10am

​Bristol Ballet offers Mommy and Me/Caregiver and Child classes, where caregivers can enjoy movement and dance with their toddlers. We offer a class for 2 year olds and their caregivers and a class for toddlers aged 12-24 months and their caregivers. The classes use a developmentally appropriate curriculum (Discover Dance) to help toddlers develop motor skills, muscle strength, and social skills, while also having fun.

Third Session
January 9-February 27

Fourth Session
March 5-April 23

Coffee & Conversation for Grandfamilies

  • Support
  • Information
  • Resources

Are you a grandparent raising grandchildren? Join us on the 1st Monday of each month at 10:00 AM to connect with other grandparents in similar situations, discuss trials and tribulations, and get information and resources on raising children in today’s society.

Meet at Memorial Park Community Center
(Johnson City).

The organization is looking for mentors age 23+ to volunteer 2-3 hours for 2-3 weekends a month as part of their Community-Based Program.


MOPS gathers and supports moms. They believe in the simple but revolutionary idea that remarkable things happen when moms come together. The MOPS acronym stands for “Mothers of Preschoolers” because it began in 1973 when a group of moms with young children banded together to share their lives and parenting journeys. Over the past 48 years, MOPS has expanded our community to include moms with school-aged kids. In addition, MOPS is partnering with churches and organizations worldwide to equip and encourage moms in more than 70 countries.

Find your MOPS group:

Free Reading Resources

Governor’s Early Literacy Foundation is partnering with the Tennessee Department of Education to provide at-home reading resources for free to all Tennessee families of K–2 children to help young learners become stronger readers. Based on your child’s grade level, they will receive the At-Home Decodable Book Series, a collection of seven booklets containing 20+ exciting stories full of sounds and words to practice, and age-appropriate, high-quality Scholastic books. Click here to order your kit.

Appalachian Highlands Healthy Babies, or AHH Babies provides free breastfeeding information and encouragement. Three opportunities each month provide a variety of days and times to attend the series of four meetings.

AHH Babies provides:

  • Mother-to-Mother support
  • Leaders accredited by La Leche League International
  • Latest breastfeeding information

Virtual and in-person options help you get your questions answered and/or offer support to other parents.

Visit for meeting schedules!

Cherished Mom presents: Mama-U

Join Mama-U and learn about maternal mental health. Plus, get rewarded with a coupon book filled with freebies and discounts upon completion.

For more information, visit or email

Are you or do you know a pregnant or parenting teen in need of support? Then they need MOMS R US!

The YWCA’s MOMS R US program provides both virtual and in-person classes to share education, resources, and encouragement to support teen health, academic studies, and overall well-being.

First-time pregnant and parenting teenagers who are 19 and younger are eligible for free enrollment!

Register online: Email: Workshops offered include Prepared Childbirth and Parenting and Support Group for Teen Parents.

Dates and times will vary based on the need of each teen parent!

Building with the Lions

Families are invited to drop by the Jones Meeting Center at the Johnson City Public Library the second Saturday of every month between 10:30AM – 12PM for Building with the Lions. You can build creations using LEGO blocks and other construction materials. Your creations will be displayed in the Children’s Library. This program is facilitated by the Johnson City Lions Club.

Project Dads

Project Dads is a comprehensive and innovative parenting class for fathers that utilize the 24/7 Dad curriculum developed by the parenting experts of the National Fatherhood Initiative. This program helps men develop the attitudes, knowledge and skills they need to get and stay involved with their children. Topics covered include discipline, working with mom and co-parenting, showing and handling feelings, masculinity, dealing with anger, improving communication skills, stress, substance use, work and more.

Upcoming Parenting Opportunities

Meet other parents and caregivers, gain and give support and knowledge!

  • MOMS R Us registering now for classes beginning February 2024 – FREE, IN PERSON
  • Registering for Attached at the Heart parenting program beginning February 2024! – FREE, ONLINE, IN PERSON
  • Mom Power Series by Families Free will be starting sessions over again soon! – FREE, IN PERSON
  • Tricities Parenting in-person meetup, Sundays at 3:30PM at the Parenting Sweet – FREE, ONLINE, IN PERSON
  • Prenatal Parenting Series at Ballad Health OBGYN offices and health departments – FREE, IN PERSON
  • AHH Babies breastfeeding in-person meetup on Fourth Tuesdays at the YWCA – FREE, IN PERSON

Visit the Parenting Sweet Program Notion Catalog for Details and Registration or email! Don’t see a class you need? Let us know!

Parenting Sweet is here to help make parenting sweet!

Parents get connected to support and information because learning about parenting and getting support does make a difference. If you would you like to continue receiving Parenting Sweet, you’ll need to be sure to sign up on the website. If you know a parent, caregiver, grandparent, or anyone who cares about children, share the sign-up link with them and help them find all that’s great for children and families in our community. Past issues and all the events are available anytime on the Blog.

Support for this program is provided by Ballad Population Health Community Health Initiative and Bristol Public Housing. Parenting Sweet Team: Samantha Gray, Lily Royston, Susan Turner, Emily Macbeth, Katherine Wilson-Thompson, Melissa Roberts, and Margaret Feierabend. Have information to share? Submit it to


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